It is with deep sadness Canadian Finishing and Coatings Manufacturing magazine announces that founding publisher, Pete Wilkinson, passed away on April 30 after battling cancer. He was 72.
Pete Wilkinson born in Toronto in 1947, he studied English at the University of Waterloo, where among other things, he promoted and organized rock concerts for the other students.
His early career centered on the camera business, selling cameras of all types across Ontario. He remained a photography buff throughout his life, and he made photo spreads a consistent feature in CFCM. He was also a keen fisherman, who always enjoyed an afternoon spent on the lakes around southern Ontario, and, especially, near his home close to Peterborough, ON.
He switched from camera sales to the publishing industry in the 1980s, working for magazines serving a variety of industries. In this period, he was employed by Maclean-Hunter Ltd. and Naylor Publishing Co. In April 1995, he joined the former Kay Publishing Co. as sales representative for Coatings magazine. Coatings was bought by Toronto-based Rogers Media in 1999, and he moved with the publication, at the same time taking over as publisher, following the retirement of the magazine’s founder, Barry Kay. In 2007, he launched CFCM magazine, using his extensive experience and contacts in the paint and coatings industries.
As a business partner, he was joined by Brian Jones, whom he had met when Jones was a financial consultant to Rogers Media. His new venture was initially published in tabloid format, switching to the more conventional journal format in 2015. The magazine grew and thrived and Pete became a fixture in the industry, always seen at tradeshows with his signature camera in his hands.
Jones died in August 2018, leaving Wilkinson the sole owner of CFCM. His own cancer, a form of multiple myeloma, had been diagnosed in April of that year, but he drew strength from running the publication and from his life partner, Jacquie, and sister, Mary.
Pete remained dedicated to his beloved magazine, working and connecting with clients throughout his illness. He always used to say, “As long as I have a phone, I can sell.” A wonderful man and a kind soul, Pete will be dearly missed. We remain dedicated to his legacy and the industry he loved.
If you wish to send a message of sympathy or offer condolences, email Gillian Thomas at email@example.com. Messages will be compiled for the family.